The EU-funded CROWDTHERMAL project and the COST Action CA18219 ‘Research network for including geothermal technologies into decarbonized heating and cooling grids – Geothermal-DHC’ co-organised the webinar ‘How to evaluate and take into account public perception in geothermal district heating and cooling projects‘ on 4 July 2022, 15:00 – 16:30 CEST (Brussels time). This webinar was part of a series of activities entitled ‘Bringing geothermal heating and cooling networks closer to the people’.


To meet the near-zero CO2 emissions by 2050, the decarbonisation of the heating sector should also be included in the countries’ priorities and climate change commitments. Among the barriers that this sector is facing is the public perception of the new technologies and their implementation due to lack of information, costs, trust and regulations. In recent years, the co-creation of public values and ideas is being considered as an option for public engagement.

It is generally acknowledged that public perception may jeopardise the deployment of a technological project, in this case, the use of geothermal for the decarbonisation of heating and cooling networks. Thus, this webinar aimed to take the first step towards understanding how people perceive the use of geothermal energy, consider co-creation actions for the management of geothermal projects and how certain tools can be applied for the better planning and monitoring of geothermal projects. Finally, this webinar aspired to raise attention and involve the participants in Geothermal-DHC’s follow-up activities.

The event recording is now available here:

15:00 – 15:15 Introductory round table between the keynote speakers
15:15 – 15:35 Evaluation protocol for planning and monitoring of geothermal projects, Jan Hildebrand, IZES, CROWDTHERMAL project
15:35 – 15:55 Presentation of the results from GeoFood public perception survey, Maja Turnšek, University of Maribor
15:55 – 16:15 Collective action to support the development of sustainable district heating (focus on the project level: collaborative Business Model and co-creation), Johanna Ayrault, ENGIE, PhD candidate
16:15 – 16:30 Questions to the speakers and Joint discussion


The mission of the EU-funded project CROWDTHERMAL is to empower citizens to directly participate in the development of geothermal projects, with the help of alternative financing schemes and social engagement tools. CROWDTHERMAL aims to initiate a new form of public dialogue, during which it will be possible to jointly tackle concerns and increase interest in geothermal energy. The aim is to take public engagement to a new level, empowering citizens to directly participate in the development of geothermal projects with the help of alternative financing, such as crowdfunding. This will only be possible if public trust can be gained, and the transparency around geothermal projects (and their social and environmental impacts) can be maximised.

The scope of the CROWDTHERMAL project is European. Led by the European Federation of Geologists, CROWDTHERMAL is implemented by a consortium of 10 partners from 7 European countries, combining extensive experience in large-scale geothermal project development, alternative finance, social media engagement, innovation, education, and international networking on geothermal energy. In addition, 17 EFG National Association members support the extension of the project database and the dissemination in 18 countries.

For more information, please visit the CROWDTHERMAL website:


The COST Action CA18219 Geothermal-DHC addresses the inclusion of geothermal energy in decarbonized heating and cooling grids across Europe. The network follows a technologically bottom-up approach involving the whole spectrum of geothermal and envisaging the whole process chain from planning to operation and monitoring. Our network addresses both, refitted existing heating and cooling networks as well as new grids. Geothermal may act as a heating source, sink or storage and may be combined with other renewables or waste heat in multivalent heating and cooling grids. Geothermal-DHC aims to demonstrate that geothermal energy has the potential to significantly enhance the share of renewable energy sources in heating and cooling grids to 30% in 2030 and 50% in 2050 in Europe.

Geothermal-DHC connects researchers from various disciplines (e.g. geosciences, energy conversion and social science) with stakeholders (e.g. energy suppliers, municipalities and energy planners), who are interested to lower the CO2 footprint of heating and cooling in their region. Currently, the network is covering participants from more than 30 European countries as well as observers from outside of Europe.

For more information on Geothermal-DHC please visit

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